Market leader turns optimistic of car sales


    Market leader Toyota Motor Philippines (TMP) Corp. has turned a bit more optimistic on the prospects of the company and the automotive industry, with decline in sales seen softening to less than 40 percent from a year ago fueled by improved numbers starting this month.

    TMP president Atsuhiro Okamoto in a virtual press conference at the launch of the new Vios on July 25 said the company now sees total vehicle sales to reach 250,000 to 300,000 units and Toyota sales to hit 100,000 units.

    Earlier projections placed the decline in sales to 40 percent this year from 369,941 units in 2019.

    TMP’s forecast for the company’s sales this year is 38 percent down from 162,011 units in 2019

    “In July, the momentum of the market recovery is bit faster. The momentum is better than we assumed,” Okamoto said

    Okamoto said TMP’s Sta. Rosa, Laguna assembly plant is also poised to return to two shifts by September from the current one.

    This would double output to 200 units. Team members have also been retained despite lower production.

    Okamoto said due to the new coronavirus disease pandemic that locked down assembly, TMP will not be able to meet the volume target for the VIos under the Comprehensive Automotive Resurgence Strategy within the original fixed time until 2024 where it is required to produce 200,000 units.

    He said TMP hopes to start negotiation with government on how to adjust the timeline for CARS.

    Jose Maria Atienza, senior vice president for marketing at TMP, said.
    the company eyes to sell 24,000 units of the Vios of which 14,000 are the new model or about 2,700 units per month.

    Atienza said the Philippines is the volume leader in Southeast Asia for the Vios which started local production in 2007. Since then 300,000 units were made in the Philppines out of the 800,000 units TMP assembled locally the past 30 years.

    For TMP, Atienza said this is the best time to introduce the new Vios “not only to provide customers with better choices in terms of available vehicles but also as a company, and as market leader it is our role give momentum back to the market.”

    He said TMP strives to motivate consumer purchasing momentum especially under this critical situation. In partnership with Toyota Financial Services Philippines, TMP has prepared special programs to make acquisition of vehicles more affordable. (I. Isip)